Aubrey Huff belted a three run home run in the bottom of the ninth to send the Tigers into extra frames against the Jays and then Brandon Inge scored on a Marco Scutaro error to give the Tigers an impressive come from behind win. Scutaro also made an error in the ninth that put Curtis Granderon on to lead off the ninth so he’s definitely the goat in this one.
Justin Verlander had one bad inning. He gave up five runs in sixth including a pair of home runs. In all, he gave up ten hits for just the second time all season. He did strikeout nine and that brings his season total up to 239 on the season. Fu-Te Ni and Jeremy Bonderman both threw shutout frames and Bobby Seay got the last Jay out in the tenth and he improved to 6-3.
Ryan Raburn had a nice game and he went two for three with a solo home run and an RBI single. Huff had the three run blast and he did it as a pinch hitter. Magglio Ordonez went two for four with a walk and he’s now pushed his season batting average up to .296.
The Twins won but the Tigers still shaved that magic number down to 14. Jarrod Washburn gets the nod as the Royals come to town. Robinson Tejada throws for the Royals.
The Tigers snapped their five game losing streak yesterday. Rick Porcello bounced back from a rough start and he picked up his thirteenth win of the season while the bullpen threw three shutout frames to seal it up. Porcello gave up two runs on four its and two walks with two strikeouts in six innings with an 8-4 groundball to flyball ratio. Fernando Rodney actually threw a shutout inning in a non-save situation and both Zach Miner and Brandon Lyon threw a shutout frame.
Miguel Cabrera went two for three with two walks, two runs and an RBI. Magglio Ordonez continued his solid second half and he went three for four with a run. Brandon Inge went two for four with two RBIs.
Speaking of Ordonez, he’s hitting .360 since the All Star Break. The problem is, he’s driven in just 12 run in 43 games. Still, he has a .954 OPS during that time and while he hasn’t gotten the homeruns, he has a .432 OBP so he’s getting on base for the team. Not sure if it warrants the contract extension, but he’s getting it done in his own way.
The Tigers finish up the wrap around series tonight. Justin Verlander gets the nod against David Purcey.
The Royals rained on the Tigers parade for the second straight game as they did just enough to get Justin Verlander out after six innings to they could touch up the bullpen. Verlander was sharp, and he gave up just a run on six hits and three walks with eight strikeouts in six innings, but when he left, it was 1-0 game and Bobby Seay was gaave up a run in the seventh and Fernando Rodney was knocked around for three runs in the eighth to put this one out of reach. Verlander took the loss and he fell to 16-8.
The Tigers didn’t score their run until the ninth when Al Avila drove home Miguel Cabrera with a sac. fly. Carlos Guillen doubled and drew a walk while Clete Thomas doubled but struck out three times.
The Twins and White Sox both won so we didn’t get a break there. This afternoon, it’ll be Jarrod Washburn against Lenny DiNardo.
The Tigers lost a tough one last night. They led by as many as three runs only to see the last place Royals storm back and take this game. Rick Porcello was very solid through the first four but he was tagged for two more runs in the bottom of the fifth. Then Bobby Seay gave up a pair of runs that proved to be the difference and the Tigers lost 7-5.
Porcello gave up four runs on seven hits and one walk with four strikeouts in six innings. Bobby Seay fell to 5-3 when he gave up two runs but an assist goes to Ryan Perry, who inherited the bases loaded with two outs (one runner was Porcello’s and the other two Seay’s) before he gave up back to back singles to give the Royals the lead. Jeremy Bonderman gave up a walk and a single that led to a run and he got just one out.
I was a little taken aback when I saw Ryan Raburn was leading off but he showed me and went three for four with a solo home run and two runs. He now has eleven on the season after having a career high of four. Marcus Thames singled and drove in a pair while Miguel Cabrera went two for three with two walks and a run.
Same time, same place tomorrow and it’ll be Justin Verlander going for win number 17 going up against Robinson Tejada. The Tigers got some help last night because both the Twins and White Sox lost, so the Tigers 6 1/2 game lead is still intact.
One more time.
It doesn’t look like the Tigers are going to pick up a half game on their off day today. The Twins jumped out to a 5-0 lead against the Jays in the first before I could even switch over from the Pirates/Cubs game.
For Brandon Inge, the fourth time was the charm. He struck out in his first three at bats yesterday then came up with two outs in the top of the tenth with the bases loaded and drove them all home with a grand slam. Up until that point, the Tigers had been shut down to the tune of one run on four hits by Wade Davis and then Lance Cormier. The first run came on a solo shot by Aubrey Huff, his 14th of the season. For Inge, it was his 27th and that ties his 2006 career high.
I was in the car listening in when Inge hit his slam and I just got a chance to see the video highlight. I wonder if Brandon has a headache this morning from all of those helmet taps.
Edwin Jackson threw eight innings and he improved to 12-6. He gave up three runs on six hits and three walks with four strikeouts in eight innings. Brandon Lyon got ninth inning duties yesterday and he picked up his third save of the season.
The Twins and White Sox lost so the Tigers now have a seven game and a magic number low enough to have on their standings. Even better, they roll into Kansas City to take on the last place Royals for a three game set beginning tomorrow. The Twins and White Sox both play this afternoon.
Man, the bullpen, and then eventually the hitters, put together a really nice game as the Tigers won their fifth straight. Armando Galarraga was roughed up in his return to the rotation but from the time the first reliever came into the game, things turned around. Eddie Bonine got an inning ending double play in the third on his first batter and after that, six relievers combined to throw six shutout innings to allow the Tigers hitters to get back into this one. Jeremy Bonderman threw 1 2/3 shutout innings and while I didn’t see it, he was hitting the low 90s. Bonderman walked a couple in the seventh and got into trouble, but Bobby Seay came in to get further into the jame which he eventually pitched out of.
Placido Polanco put the Tigers on the board in the first with a solo home run. Then Carlos Guillen tripled home two in the third to make it a 4-3 deficit before the Rays scored two more in the bottom half of the inning. The seventh and eighth were the big frames. Al Avila belted a two run home run in the seventh and Placido Polanco later singled home a run to tie the game. Then in the eighth, Marcus Thames had a solid single (I got to see this) that scored Don Kelly for the game winner.
It’s weird seeing all of the minor leaguers up this early. I haven’t checked to verify, but this could be the first time in a while that none of the Tiges affiliates make the postseason. Even the Whitecaps look like they’re going to just fall short.
The Tigers go for their second straight sweep this afternoon. Edwin Jackson throws for the Tigers against his former team while Wade Davis makes his major league debut. He’s another 2004 draftee (third round). The Twins did win but the Tigers kept their six game lead. The White Sox also won (fourth straight) and they don’t seem to want to go away.
It looks like the Caps are in the playoffs. They play the Loons in a three game series. The Midwest League, with their first half/second half/wildcard system is a little, well, confusing.
There’s a chance that we look back at the night of September 4, 2009 as the night the scales finally tipped in one direction in the AL Central. The Twins lost to a mediocre Indians team and then the Tigers rallied for three runs in the top of the ninth (all of which they’d end up needing) to walk away with a win against the Rays. The end result is that the Tigers have a six game lead in the AL Central with 28 games left to play. If the Tigers play .500 ball the rest of the way and finish 14-14, this would force the Twins to go 20-8. Possible, but not likely for a team that’s had a tough time keeping their head over the .500 mark. It’d be nice if the Tigers have the division wrapped up before that final four game series with the Twins the last week of the season and if the Tigers keep doing their thing, that’s a distinct possibility.
Last night’s game was a pitcher’s dual for eight innings with Justin Verlander and Jeff Niemann both pitching into the eighth inning and each allowing just one run. Verlander and Niemann were the second and fourth picks in the 2004 draft and while Verlander has had the longer career to date, Niemann looks like a keeper as well, which explains why the Rays, with guys like Niemann and Price, were willing to part with Edwin Jackson this past offseason.
Verlander gave up a run on four hits and a walk with seven strikeouts in eight innings. He did get up to 126 pitches and it’s the third time in five starts he’s topped the 120 pitch mark. I know the Tigers haven’t clinched, but if they get that lead up to eight or nine, Leyland might want to start cutting short some of Verlander’s starts so he’ll have a ready arm heading into the postseason.
Fernando Rodney was rocked for two runs on two hits and two walks in the ninth but fortunately, had three runs to work with so he picked up his 32nd save of the season. For Verlander, it was his 16th win of the season.
Miguel Cabrera his his 28th home run of the season and he finished two for four. Adam Everett drove in a run with a single and then he later scored on a sac. fly by Placido Polanco in the ninth.
Armando Galarraga makes his return tonight and the Rays will throw James Shields. The FOX game of the week for us should be the Indians and the Twins so the Tigers will know if they’ve picked up half game or not before their first pitch.
The Tigers needed ten innings yesterday, but Placido Polanco drove home Ryan Raburn with a sac. fly in the bottom of the tenth to wrap up a sweep of the Cleveland Indians. With the win, the Tigers extended their lead in the AL Central to five games over the Twins as they hit the road for a three game series against the Rays.
Curtis Granderson put the Tigers on the board with a lead off home run and then Clete Thomas tripled home two runs in the seventh to give the Tigers a 3-0 lead. The Indians then rallied in the eighth for three runs off of Ryan Perry and Fu-Ten Ni before Zach Miner came in to get the Tigers out of the jam. Miner went on to throw two more shutout innings and he picked up the win to improve to 6-4. A really good start by Nate Robertson almost went to waste. He gave up four hits and two walks with four strikeouts in six shutout innings.
The Twins take on the Indians over the weekend. Tonight, we’ll get to see Jeff Niemann who had a really nice start last Sunday against the Tigers. Justin Verlander goes for his 16th win as he throws for the Tigers.
So much for Rick Porcello wearing down at the end of the year. He’s given up two runs or less in six of his last seven starts and this one was good for win number twelve. He gave up two runs on five hits with one strikeout in seven innings and he had a typical 14/6 ground out to fly out ratio. He also needed just 81 pitches to get through the seven frames before he gave up it up to the pen. Porcello did pitch into the eighth but he gave up a solo home run to Travis Hafner to lead off the inning so he gave it up to Bobby Seay and then Brandon Lyon to get through the eghth. Fernando Rodney threw a shutout ninth and he picked up save number 31.
The Tigers did get five extra chances because the Indians made five errors Magglio Ordonez went three for four ad he drove in a run. Placido Polanco went two for four with a run.
Nate Robertson makes his second start this afternoon and the Indians will throw Fausto Carmona. Both of these guys have ERA’s north of six so this one could get interesting. The Twins lost yesterday so the Tigers now have a 4 1/2 game lead and with the Twins being off, the Tigers could make it five with a win today.
Giving this another shot. I hate hackers.
I didn’t really have anything special planned, but this is the 2,000th post on Tigerblog.net. Throw in a couple hundred posts at the 1968 Tigers site, a couple of years worth of diaries at the now dormant Reds Cutting Edge and a couple hundred Business of Baseball Reports at the Hardball Times and it’s made for an interesting ride. While there have been some nights where I didn’t feel like posting, I’ve never thought about giving it up. Thanks to everyone for stopping by these past few years.
And the way I fixed my RSS feed didn’t work this time (I’ve been hacked again). Please bear with me.
Justin Verlander had one bad inning in his start earlier this afternoon when he gave up a pair of home runs in a three run fourth. The Tigers took a 3-1 deficit into the eighth and it looked like it was going to be another lackluster performance by the offense before Placido Polanco went deep with a big three run home run. Give some credit to Clete Thomas as well. He doubled to lead off the seventh and he pushed Jeff Niemann out of the game. Grant Balfour couldn’t hold the lead and the rest is history.
Speaking of Clete, he finished with three hits and he scored on Curtis Granderson’s single in the third inning. Granderson singled, drew a walk and he also scored on Polanco’s long ball.
Justin Verlander picked up his fifteenth win. He gave up the three runs on six hits and three walks with four strikeouts in eight innings. With five full weeks, Verlander should get six more starts unless the Tigers pitch him on four days rest (and opting to go without a fifth starter at times) in which he might get a seventh start. A lot will depend on whether the Tigers can clinch early or if they stumble and it goes down to the wire. Anyway, my point was going to be Verlander’s chances at 20 wins and it doesn’t look too great unless he’s lights out the rest of the way.
The final is tomorrow afternoon in a somewhat rare Monday afternoon game. It’ll be James Shields going up against Jarrod Washburn.
The Tigers went back to their arms to pull out the win in this one as they took care of the Rays 6-2 at Comerica Park. Porcello won his eleventh game of the season with a really nice start. He gave up one run on four hits and two walks with five strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings. He left in the sixth after giving up his first run and stereotypical start for Porcello with nine ground outs and three fly outs. Brandon Lyon also had a nice outing with two perfect innings. Bobby Seay got into trouble in the ninth and he gave up a run before Leyland went to Fernando Rodney out of the pen to get the final out.
Gerald Laird was the hitting star in this one and he went two for three with a double, a run and two RBIs. Curtis Granderson doubled, singled and drove in a run while Brandon Inge singled, scored two and he hit his 25th home run of the season.
The White Sox lost and the Twins won so it’s Minnesota who’s now in second, 4 1/2 back (five in the loss column) of the Tigers. Nate Robertson makes his first start of the season and he’ll go up against the Rays former number one pick David Price. Price hasn’t quite lived up to the hype yet but he’s had decent starts in four of his last five outings. He just turned 24 earlier this week.
The Tigers lost their finale with the Angels this afternoon and they left the West Coast with a 3-3 split between the Angels and A’s. Not too shabby considering the Tigers road record. Now they come home for four against the Rays and they won’t have to go back on the road until this time next week.
Edwin Jackson took the loss and he fell to 10-6. He gave up four runs on eight hits and four walks with three strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings. Ryan Perry then came in and he held the Angels hitless in 1 2/3 innings. For Jackson, this is the closest his ERA has been to three since it popped over the mark for one game after a rough start on May 4 against the Twins. It also breaks his three game winning streak.
The Tigers scored both of their runs on a two run home run by Adam Everett in the fifth inning. Everett was also the only hitter to pick up two hits while Marcus Thames and Magglio Ordonez reached base twice with a single and a walk.
The White Sox are losing 2-1 in the eighth. The Twins are down to the Orioles 3-1 in the fourth. It’d be nice if both of those teams lost. The Tigers have the day off tomorow to travel back to Detroit. Friday it’ll be Matt Garza going up against Rick Porcello. In game two on Saturday, Nate Robertson will make his return to the rotation. The Tigers optioned Armando Galarraga to Triple A to give him some rest because of an inflamed elbow.
Despite all of the Tigers’ troubles on the road, even if they lose this afternoon, they’ll have a 3-3 split in their west coast trip against Oakland and Angels. They did it with another nice win last night. Jarrod Washburn made one mistake (three run home run) that put the Tigers down but he pitched a solid game outside of that. Then the pen threw three shutout innings and the bats came through with some timely hits to give the Tigers a 4 1/2 game lead (five in the loss column) in the AL Central. The only bad news is the resurgance of the Twins, who have won five straight and who are now tied with the White Sox at an even 63-63 record.
Miguel Carbera had another nice game. He put the Tigers on the board in the first when he pushed home Placido Polanco on a ground out in the top of the first. Then he belted a solo shot in the fifth to tie the game at 3-3. The Tigers then took the lead in the top of the seventh with a somewhat rare event when Curtis Granderson and Placido Polanco hit back to back triples. Polanco later scored an insurance run on a sac. fly by Magglio Ordonez.
Jarrod Washburn gave up the three runs in six innings and he improved to 9-7. Zach Miner walked four in 1 2/3 shutout innings while Fernando Rodney got into trouble in the ninth (first and second with nobody out) but he pitched out of it to earn his 28th save of the season.
One more game before the Tigers come home to take on the Rays in a wrap around series. It’ll be Edwin Jackson going up against Joe Saunders.
The Tigers won a shootout last night as they dropped the Angels 10-7 in a game that saw Miguel Cabrera drive in five runs. He finished the game three for five with a home run, two doubles and he scored twice. Every Tiger starter had a hit in this one and the only Tiger starter who didn’t score a run was Gerald Laird. Carlos Guillen continued his solid second half with his sixth home run, a single and three RBIs.
Justin Verlander picked up the win and he improved to 14-7 although it was hardly his best start. He gave up four runs on ten hits and two walks with seven strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings. Brandon Lyon was shelled for three runs in the eighth that made the game interesting and that was his worst outing in a while. From June 2 through the beginning of the game yesterday, he had given up just three earned runs combined and he hadn’t given up a run a run of his own since July 4. Fernando Rodney got the final four outs (two via strikeout) and he picked up his 27th save of the season.
Tonight, it’ll be Jarod Washburn going up against another one of his former teams. The Angels will throw John Lackey, who’s had a decent season despite a mediocre 8-6 record. The White Sox lost yesterday so the Tigers lead is back to 3 1/2 games and it’d be nice if the Tigers could stretch that out even further.
Once again, the Tigers struggled on the road. This time it was their first of two three game series out on the west coast. They dropped two of three against the Athletics and unfortunately, it doesn’t get any easier because next up is four against the Angels. Jack Cust took Rick Porcello deep twice as he took the loss in this one. He fell to 10-8 and he gave up five runs on eight hits and a walk with one strikeout. Ryan Perry also struggled in the eighth and he gave up a pair of home runs, including a three run shot with two inherited runners. It was too bad because in the top of the eighth, Miguel Cabrera had just belted a two run home run to make it a one run game.
Curtis Granderson also went yard in this one. He belted his 24th of the season to lead off the game. Cabrera finished the game three for four with two RBIs and two runs. The only other hitter with more then one hit was Ramon Santiago with a pair of singles.
We’ve got a good matchup between two young pitchers tomorrow when Justin Verlander and Jered Weaver square off. Weaver’s having the best full season of his career and he’s finally living up the hype when he was a first round pick back in 2004. Speaking of Weaver, Jeff Weaver is making a comeback of sorts with the Dodgers. He’s having a solid year and he’s done both as a starter and a long reliever. Not bad seeing he hadn’t pitched in the big leagues since 2007 and he hadn’t done anything meaningful since taking us to task back in the 2006 World Series. It’s hard to believe it was over 7 years ago that he got traded.
After a rough 2008 debut season in the minors, Jared Gayhart, the Tigers 13th round pick in 2008, has put together a nice season. He’s gone all the way from West Michigan to Erie and he make his first start since joining the Tigers organization yesterday. Not too shabby because he threw five shutout innings and at his three stops this year he has 69 strikeouts in 72 innings and a .182 batting average against. He’ll probably start at Erie next year, but that puts him that much closer to seeing the big leagues.